So, I’d like you take a moment to really savor this story from the Times. Roll it around your tongue like a cheap Trump wine and taste the utter lack of complexity. Basically, what the four-time bankruptcy king of Queens is saying is that immediately after launching a trade war with China, after antagonizing Saudi Arabia, and provoking Mexico — in short, after pissing off everybody in the world who is holding our paper — he then intends to turn the nation’s fiscal institutions into a giant, fly-by-night credit counseling service.
And do his best to stiff our creditors.
I guess he’s been listening to the ads on MSNBC while waiting on hold to talk to Joe Scarborough.
First of all, what’s the incentive for any of our creditors to accept less than what they’re owed? That might have worked with his companies, but only because after lending him money, those creditors realized that he was both stupid and unstable and was likely to drive his businesses off a cliff. If they didn’t take less than they were owed, they realized, they’d likely end up with nothing. Countries don’t work like that.
Now, if he did manage to hijack the full faith and credit of the United States, much as he’s hijacked the GOP, he could try to play that sort of a game of chicken with it. Sure. But it would inevitably be a disaster. And he could not even attempt it without driving international and domestic investment to more stable – or at least less erratic — places like China, hell, even like Cuba. He couldn’t do it without driving up interest rates on the US debt in the medium term. Or without driving up interest rates for individuals as well, so that you have to pay 17 or 18 percent interest when you pull out the credit card to pay the 67-year-old poverty-wage “associate” at Wal-Mart for that package of Chinese-made batteries which now cost four times what they used to because of retaliatory tariffs. (You need the batteries to operate that little personal cooling fan you’re using because you can’t afford to replace your Carrier air conditioner in the middle of a climate change-driven heat wave because Trump’s slapped a tariff on those, too.)
There are a great many things over which I disagree with Hillary Clinton. This may be the biggest. Trump, clueless as he is, is not a “risk.” He’s a guaranteed gold-plated disaster, and that’s just based on the things he says he actually would do on purpose. Forget the stuff he’d do by accident. You can take that to the bank. But if I were you, I’d hurry.